NYS offers these additional opportunities to learn, excel, and give back to the community.
Due to Covid-19, most of our usual enrichment opportunities are not possible due to state and local guidelines for distancing.
The NYS sponsors a Concerto Competition every year for members of the Principal Orchestra. All who wish to do so may audition in January for this event. MUSIC TO BE PERFORMED AT THE COMPETITION MUST BE SUBMITTED TO THE PRINCIPAL ORCHESTRA CONDUCTOR NO LATER THAN THE FIRST REHEARSAL IN NOVEMBER. This insures that (a) the work being prepared is playable by the orchestra and (b) the music will not have to be rented. The winner will play a movement of a concerto with the orchestra at the Winter concert. Due to Covid-19, this season's Concerto Competition will be different. The deadline to register for an audition is April 1st, and eligible participants will audition on April 24th at Norwalk City Hall. For full details on this year's competition, click here.
Professional musicians and teachers are brought to rehearsals a minimum of two times during each concert period to work specifically with different sections of all five orchestras. Such sessions are invaluable in helping to prepare each member of the NYS for performance at concerts and in producing a unified sound within sections. The dates of these sectionals are listed in the NYS schedule. This season, sectionals are online.
In the summer of 2008 NYS embarked on its first performance trip overseas to Prague, Budapest, Vienna and Salzburg. Since then, NYS has traveled biannually. Past tours include touring the Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, Spain, Italy, Germany, Portugal, and in 2021 a trip to Italy will be offered. The NYS Performance Tours are open to students in the Concert and Principal Orchestras. The 2020 Italy trip was postponed to 2022. Click here for more info and a detailed itinerary.
From time to time we hold master classes, where participants in our program may perform in public for a guest instructor, who then coaches the students. Both audience members and performers can learn a great deal from these “open lessons”. More info here. All Master Classes are online for the 2020-2021 season.
Additional Performance Opportunities
In order to enhance the performing experience for its musicians, the Norwalk Youth Symphony arranges for performances in such places as Carnegie Hall, Tanglewood, Music in the Parks, The Norwalk Maritime Aquarium and the Norwalk Public Library. These are considered to be an integral part of the musical education the NYS offers and participation is mandatory. Carnegie Hall was rescheduled for 2022. Other in-person events are not possible.
Community Service concerts by NYS orchestras and/or chamber music participants enhance the performance experience for our musicians, while thanking the community for its support. During the pandemic, NYS musicians are volunteering as online tutors and mentors to students at Ridgefield High School. We look forward to resuming benefit concerts when possible and to expanding our community service and are exploring opportunities to support musicians in the Norwalk public schools.
The Youth Committee is the representative voice of all orchestras of the Norwalk Youth Symphony. Its purpose is to listen to the concerns and suggestions of orchestra members and to help make participation in NYS a more rewarding experience. The committee meets once a month with a parent advisor who reports back to the Board of Directors as the Committee's messenger, thus an opportunity for open communication between the orchestras and the Board is provided, and the Board receives information that helps it to run the organization in a way that will ensure a positive musical experience for all members. Visit the Youth Committee page here. The Youth Committee holds their meetings online until we are allowed back into City Hall for in-person rehearsals.
The most valuable contribution parents can make is to support their student's obligation to attend all rehearsals and to encourage them to prepare the music thoroughly. However, we also need parent assistance for many other things. Please volunteer your time and talent by joining our PARENT ENSEMBLE. In addition, each family is expected to assist once with the afternoon snack that is served to the musicians at every major rehearsal. Parents must sign up for snack duty at the first rehearsal of the season. Parents are also expected to volunteer at one concert each year. There is no snack duty this season, as rehearsals are held online.